Employee unions, Oppn parties cry foul after PRC recommends 7.5% fitment

Hyderabad: A day after the first Pay Revision Commission (PRC) for Telangana government employees recommended a fitment of 7.5 per cent on basic pay, employee unions and opposition parties in the state expressed disappointment. Many of them on Wednesday and Thursday took to the streets to lodge protest over meager pay hike even after waiting for over 30 months.

The three-member commission of the retired IAS officers, comprising CR Biswal as chairman and C Umamaheswara Rao and Mohammed Ali Rafath as members, was constituted by the Telangana government in May 2018. The CR Biswal committee submitted its report on December 31, 2020, to chief secretary Somesh Kumar after the PRC ‘bonanza’ announcement by the chief minister K Chandrashekhar Rao to over 9.35 lakh government employees. 

Besides the 7.5 per cent fitment to basic pay, the commission also recommended enhancing their retirement age from 58 to 60 years.

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Expressing their unhappiness over the PRC recommendations, leaders of three employee unions — Telangana Gazetted Officers Association, Telangana Non-gazetted Officers Association and Telangana Secretariat Association— met the three-member committee headed by Chief Secretary Somesh Kumar and said that nothing less than 43 percent salary hike will be acceptable to them. The union leaders warned that they would go on strike if their demands are not met.

Somesh Kumar
Three employee unions met chief secretary Somesh Kumar to submit their representations. (Twitter)

“The employees hoped after the formation of Telangana State, they will get reasonable salaries but PRC report has come as a huge disappointment to over nine lakh employees,” said Mamilla Rajender, Telangana Non-Gazetted Officers Association (TNGO) President, in a report by The News Minute.

Opposition parties, including Congress and the Left parties also severely criticized the report and the KCR-led government.

Telangana Pradesh Congress Committee (TPCC) president Uttam Kumar said that the fitment of 7.5 per cent was unrealistic and too below the expectations of government employees and that the Congress party would support the agitation by the government seeking at least 43 per cent fitment. He also mentioned that the government employees have played a major role in Telangana statehood agitation.

TPCC chief Uttam said that their party would support employee unions’ demands.

An official statement by the Communist Party of India (CPI) state secretary Chada Venkat Reddy said the pay revision falls way short of the employees’ expectations of fitment at 63 per cent.

CPI(M) state secretary Tammineni Veerabhadram said: “It appears as if KCR has written the PRC recommendations. Even going by the figures mentioned in the document, there should be a minimum of 18 per cent fitment. This is the lowest figure in the PRC’s history, that too when prices are rising atrociously.”

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